Communitas is dedicated to affirming, protecting and promoting human rights of people with disabilities. 

Our commitment to human rights is evidenced in our core values; we see people as people, and provide a place where everyone belongs, anyone can achieve, and each person plays a meaningful role

Aside from general human rights enjoyed by everyone, people with developmental disabilities have some specifically protected rights. Among those rights are the right to human and adequate care, to be free from discomfort, distress or deprivation, the right to appropriate communication, the right to self-determination and freedom of choice (including choice of services), the right to meaningful relationships that matter to them, a reasonable expectation of privacy, the right to be safe from free from arbitrary eviction or expulsion from their agency-managed home or day program, the right to be free from unreasonable restrictions, and the right to engage in activities that promote their meaningful participation in the communities of their choice. For more information about human rights, please visit the DDS Office of Human Rights website.

The right to be free from abuse, neglect or mistreatment

One of the most important rights is the right to be free from mistreatment. The standard for reporting suspected abuse and neglect is “reasonable cause to believe” which means that mandated reporters need only a “mere suspicion” that abuse, or neglect was committed against a person with a disability. All employees and volunteers of Communitas are mandated reporters.     To learn more about reportable abuse or neglect of adults with disabilities, including how to report, please visit the DPPC Website.

Massachusetts Abuse Reporting Numbers     

Disabled Persons Protection Commission (DPPC) (24 hours / 7 days a week)  Ages 18 to 59  
1-800-426-9009 or 1-888-822-0350 TTY     

Executive Office of Elder Affairs (EOEA) (24 hours / 7 days a week) Ages 60 and over  
1-800-922-2275     

Department of Public Health (DPH)  All Ages residing in Long Term Care Facilities
1-800-462-5540     

Department of Children and Families (DCF) (24 hours / 7 days a week) Birth to age 17  
1-800-792-5200 

How to File a Report of Abuse or Neglect  

Communitas Human Rights System

If you have any questions about anything presented here, please feel free to contact the Communitas Human Rights Coordinator, Kathy Custer at (781) 587-2208.

While all employees receive training in human rights, each program site has an assigned Human Rights Advocate with more specialized training.   The Human Rights Advocate works closely with people supported in their program, support staff and natural support systems to ensure that everyone understands human rights, and that people are encouraged and supported to advocate for human rights for themselves and others.

Human Rights Advocates (updated 7/31/19)

Residential Services  
Albion StreetRaphael F.(781) 587-3131
Haven StreetLawrence H.(781) 944-1486
Hopkins StreetRebecca M.(781) 944-7317
Main StreetGerald C.(781) 665-2884
Newcomb AvenueJessica K.(781) 231-7934
Pitman DriveChristine A.(781) 944-0302
Range Heights RoadSarah H.(781) 587-2412
Rustic LaneCrystal R.(781) 942-0484
Village StreetKaterina C.(781) 942-1283
Water StreetBrittney M.(781) 245-0440
Woodcrest DriveAlice K.(781) 246-1410
Individual Home SupportsSusan L781) 587-2426
Family Support Services  
Family Support & RecreationKathy C(781) 587-2208
Adult Family CareShelby P(781) 587-2362
Day Services  
Beverly Day ServicesAndrew N(978) 279-2100
Burlington Day ServicesTori R(781) 365-1350
Wakefield Day HabSuzanne G(781) 587-2440
Wakefield Career ServicesStephen D(781) 587-2440

Communitas Human Rights Committee

Our Human Rights Committee meets regularly to review our system for supporting human rights, to review any concerns, and to offer support and advice in their area of expertise. The Committee consists of professionals, family members, and people supported by in Communitas programs.

Russell K – Committee Chair 
Daniel D – Attorney 
Sarah C – Registered Nurse 
vacant – Mental Health Professional
Susan K – Family Member 
Kathleen A – Family Member 
Ellen H – Village Street & Wakefield Day
Tim S – Haven Street 
John H – Rustic Lane & Wakefield Day
 Andrea L – Albion Street